At the 11th hour Adam Daniel decided to apply for the University head football coaching position.
The opportunity to be the head coach at his alma mater was too much to pass up.
“It’s going to be a good deal for me,” Daniel, 41, said.
Before the season started last fall, Rob Bartlett announced it would be his last year because he had accepted a vice principal position at U-Hi. So it was thought that if Daniel wanted the job it was his for the taking.
But Daniel had some reservations because of family.
“I was going back and forth whether or not I had the energy,” said Daniel, who played his college football at the University of Idaho. “You need energy to do this job if you’re going to do it the right way.”
Daniel was picked from four finalists that included former U-Hi and current Lewis and Clark assistant Joe Turman and head coaches from California and North Dakota.
This is Daniel’s second head coaching job. He was the head coach for two years at Newport in 2010 and 2011, finishing with a 10-9 record. He led Newport to its first winning season in 2011 and was named the Northeast A coach of the year.
He left Newport to take a teaching job and assistant coaching position at U-Hi in 2012.
Daniel is a respected teacher. He heads up U-Hi’s DECA program.
“He’s a Pied Piper,” athletic director Ken Van Sickle said. “The kids love him. He took over a struggling DECA program and increased the numbers and kids started competing at the regional and state level.”
Daniel was a longtime assistant coach at Mead. He was the Greater Spokane League assistant coach of the year in 2005.
Van Sickle said Daniel impressed the interview committee.
“He’s focused on developing the whole person,” Van Sickle said. “He wants good students, good citizens and good football players. In his interview he drove it home that he wanted to develop young men. It’s not all about football.”
Daniel was the offensive line coach the last four years under Bartlett and will handle the offensive coordinating duties. His brother, Jason, is U-Hi’s defensive coordinator.
It’s expected that Daniel will keep the existing staff.
“I figured if I didn’t take the job now, I might not get another chance,” Daniel said.
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